‘The Battle of the Trees’: from medieval Welsh legend to modern fantasy

Video Conference Myth Reading Group

Thursday 24 May

12.00-1.30pm in Room EBS.1.1

Dr Dimitra Fimi (Cardiff Metropolitan University)

We are delighted to welcome Dr Dimitra Fimi to the Centre for Myth Studies for a Video Conference session of the Myth Reading Group on ‘The Battle of the Trees’ 


Cover image of Catherine Fisher’s Darkhenge (2005)

In this session we will first discuss the Welsh poem Cad Goddau (“The Battle of the Trees”) found in the 14th-century Book of Taliesin, in which trees and shrubs march to war. We will explore the ways in which the poem was later appropriated by Robert Graves in The White Goddess (first published in 1948), and from there how modern fantasy texts used motifs and ideas of this enigmatic text, with a main focus on Catherine Fisher’s fantasy novel Darkhenge (2005).


Set texts:

1. “The Battle of the Trees” from The Book of Taliesin – translation available on the Ancient Texts website

2. Extracts from Catherine Fisher’s Darkhenge (2005)


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